Teen Idol - Poppy Marriott

ncs 19/12/2017

Allow us to introduce to you our Teen Idol for the month of December, music photographer, Poppy Marriott.

We sat down with Poppy to talk about mental health, university life and how much her life has changed since starting a career in photograph. All we can say is, Poppy’s definitely one to watch in 2018!

Tell me about yourself. 

I’m a 20 year old, non-binary music photographer from London. My work is heavily based around feminism; I shoot predominantly girls, non-conforming gender folk and LGBTQIA+ babes! I mostly work in a studio and focus on mainly on portrait photography. 

How did you get into photography? 

I genuinely don't remember when I first began taking photos. I studied art in secondary school and was always a very visual person. It wasn't until 2-3 years ago that I knew that photography was something I wanted to do. I guess I really fell in love with it when I started taking disposable cameras everywhere when I was 16/17 and I haven't really stopped since then!

Photographed by Poppy Marriot

What inspires your artwork?

Mostly cinema. I’m more likely to get my inspiration from film rather than galleries and exhibition etc. I’ve always loved film and it's been a huge part of my personal style. I have photographers who I reference constantly in my work. Nan Goldin is my all time favourite along with David Lachapelle, Petra Collins, Francesca Allen and then finally, my friend Charlotte Patmore. She’s like a big sister as well as being an incredible photographer.

What has been your highlight this year?

This year has been the first year I’ve worked professionally as a photographer and that's a highlight in itself! I got to do my first magazine cover! I was lucky enough to have done a photo shoot with Marika Hackman & The Big Moon. It was so fun! I also just photographed Raye for the cover of London In Stereo and the shoot was amazing - she's so cool! I also toured twice with The Tuts who are, in my opinion, the most inspiring girls. I think being able to support myself through my photography is just the most amazing feeling.

Photographed by Poppy Marriot

If you could give advice to your 16-year-old self, what would it be?

I'd say, "This summer is going to be one of the best ones of your life, and this winter is going to be one of the hardest. College is really going to suck and the bus journey isn't going to get any nicer, but on the weekends you'll spend time with the best people you'll ever meet and they'll bring you out of your shell, show you that it's ok to be a weirdo and the music! You’re going to hear so much amazing music for the first time. Appreciate your family more, you're going to move out in two years and you'll miss the cooking and being able to put the heating on when you want." 

Do you have any other passions?

Alongside photography, I love design. Graphic design is what I’d be doing if I weren’t a photographer. And if I’m not taking photos or making zines and posters, I’ll be watching films.

Photographed by Poppy Marriot

You recently you had an exhibition called Solidarity, what was the main inspiration behind the project?

That was an installation piece in benefit of a court case called 'solidarity not silence.' A group of women are facing a defamation case after calling out a known rapist on stage. He’s claiming that they're damaging his character and basically charging them tens of thousands of pounds, which if they can't pay, means they aren't allowed to speak out about what happened. I personally know some people involved in this and it made my blood boil when I heard about it. The main piece of the instillation was a zine called 'solidarity not silence' which is up for pre-order on my site now and all profits go to the case. 

Photographed by Poppy Marriot

As a student, what advice would you give to anyone thinking of going to university or struggling to figure out what they want to do as a career?

In all honesty, my main reason behind attending university was to afford to live in London and work as a photographer. But in an unexpected turn of events, I ended up actually loving my course! My advice would be to pick something you love, not something you feel like you have to do. University is tiring, it's hard work and expensive. Don’t do something you aren't going to like, just to get a bit of paper at the end of three years. It’s shown as this thing you have to do to be successful, and yes, there are loads of opportunities, but it is absolutely not a necessity and absolutely not for everyone.